Relic Hunters Ch. 6: Two of a Kind

A/N: Gasp, could it be? The One Still Called El Diablo is, is BACK?!! Ha ha, I only wish my audience was that enthusiastic of my return. But alas, we can't all have what we want, no? Yes. And once again, no, my computer did not crash; I did not die; yadda yadda…..I guess I really have no excuse then. Shame on me : SO enough of that. I've decided to continue my long forgotten yet favorite o'mine story, Relic Hunters—Manga of the year in my heart : If it were a manga, so to speak. I again apologize for the inconvenience of my absence; I hope you will not lose interest in this story. And to help you remember what's going on again, I'll retype the summary of events (Or you may read through the chapters again, whichever you prefer):

Summary: Erica and Rune are two teenagers, whom live in a futuristic Kyoto and are both GEOs (genetically enhanced organisms). GEOs were created when there was an explosion at a specialty hospital, spilling out many unique and untested medicines and vaccines. These chemicals caused biological problems in many, and enhancements in few. Also mentioned in the introduction chapter, "relics" are very rare and powerful weapons created centuries ago by Japanese military scientists, and many people are out to get them, especially the lower class people. Most of them want to start a war to bring down the Tyrants of Kyoto, and the relics would help a lot. By chapter 4 Rune has gotten into a tiff with the Kyoto police, Erica stormed off and ran into trouble (but took care of it), and Rune met up with Erica and they found out that they are both GEOs. With the Kyoto police not too far behind Rune (they noticed something strange about his blood so they brought a blood sample to the lab), him and Erica may have some trouble returning back to her home. . .EDIT: In chapter 5, Erica had made it home safely while Rune on the other hand had run into more trouble with Chief Branaghin and his lower level lackeys. Rune had gotten himself into a fiscal position with Officer Tran and had been taken away to the police station because of his violent act.

Remember this key to help you out too:

Actions: any text written within is an action. Example: Looks up

Thoughts: any text written within ( ) is a character's thoughts. Example: (What am I doing here?)

On to the story!

With a slow and thoughtful gesture, Erica finally closes her diary. It had been so long since she has had anything positive to write into it. She cracks a small but noticeable smile as she tucks it away, back into her dresser as her father knocks on the door.

Erica: Come in.

Mr. Jheng: Your mother and I just wanted you to know that we forgive you for running off like that, and that we're glad you're okay.

Thinking that the problem had already been resolved earlier, Erica replied with hesitance.

Erica: Um…..okay?

Mr. Jheng: AND just to show you that you're parents are rather perceptive about people, turn to channel 8 dear. Then tell us what you think about your "great" friend.

Erica's eyebrow had lifted as she had no idea what her father was referring to. She shooed him out of her room and quickly turned on her television to channel 8.

News Reporter: After a long hard week for the Kyoto Police Force, Chief Branaghin has finally caught and arrested the young suspect, James Takashi. Also known on the street as "Rune."

Erica jumped to her feet.

Erica: WHAT??!

News Reporter: We're here with Branaghin in person, and would like to get a comment from him now. Chief Branaghin, any words of relief now that the hardened young criminal is now behind bars?

Branaghin: You gotta understand, the boy is just misunderstood. He's obviously had a rough time, but he still needs to know when you've broken the law you go to jail. Simple as that.

Erica's face grew enraged.

Erica: Why that FAT OVERGROWN LYING BASTARD!!!!!! You treated him like CRAP!

She began to yell at the television.

With rage still in her blood, she quickly turned off the television and threw on some casual clothes; jeans, a white t shirt and a brown jacket.. She ran downstairs and as she almost made it to the door, her parents jumped in front.

Mr. Mrs. Jheng: Where do you think you're going?

Erica: Out.

Erica responded quite fiercely, with a dark tone to her voice. Her parents were certainly not pleased.

Mr. Jheng: Now see HERE young lady---you do not talk to your parentals that way! This is what happens when you spend ONE day out in the real world? I beg to differ!

Before Mrs. Jheng could intervene with her own scolding of the sort, Erica bolted out the door, leaving a shocked and surprised look on the Jheng's faces.

Mr. Jheng: IF YOU LEAVE NOW, DON'T EXPECT TO COME BACK!!!

Mrs. Jheng began to yell at Mr. Jheng for saying such a harsh remark. She convinced him to just let her be, due to the seriousness of the look on Erica's face.

Mr. Jheng: Sigh What are we going to do with her?

Mrs. Jheng could only give a blank look, as she too had no idea what to do with their recently revolting daughter.

Meanwhile, Erica had ran far, far down the streets. She was anywhere but home now.

Erica: (…..Where is the Kyoto Police Station….)

Erica began to ponder the whereabouts of the station, until she noticed some Channel 8 vans about 40 feet in front of her.

She scurried to the vans as she thought that must be the station with the vans in front.

Erica: There! It's Branaghin himself. I made it.

Erica crept behind the Channel 8 van, and snuck around it to get past the news reporters and police. She made her way into the station, undetected.

Erica: (Oh man….what am I thinking? How am I going to find Rune in a huge station like this? And what do I do when I do find him?)

Erica walked cautiously through the dark and bland looking station. Paint was peeling off the not so bright and white walls; vending machines looked like they were held together with duct tape and glue; tiles cracked and chipped from years of lacking repairs. Erica heard a noise coming from the left hallway. She pressed herself against the nearest wall, hidden in a blanket of shadow.

She watched an officer walk by, and with no hesitance she quickly ran up behind him. She pulled his gun out of his holster, locked her arm around his neck and put the gun up to his head. She began to whisper.

Erica: No questions, no sudden movements…..where is James Takashi being held?

The officer simply pointed down the hall. With a sudden burst of energy, Erica quickly pushed him away and pistol whipped him unconscious.

Erica: (What am I doing? I've no right to be doing this….No…..they've no right to do what they've done to Rune)

After convincing herself that everything was okay, she stepped over the fallen cop and ran down the long and what seemed narrowing hallway.

She looked into every cell she passed, peeking through the peep holes in the metal doors, until she came to the last one. She noticed a figure far in the back of the cell, crouched and huddled up.

Erica: ?

The figure quickly looked up at her.

Erica: It is you! Are you okay? Did they hurt you? Oh, enough of this, let's get you out.

Rune just stared blankly into her eyes from a distance; not a remark or even a nod.

Erica: Rune? Are you okay?

Without further thought, Erica had backed up and shot the doors lock with the gun she stole. It broke after a second shot, and Erica ran inside to Rune.

Erica: Rune, say something. Anything, are you okay?

Rune lowered his head and whispered.

Rune: You shouldn't be here.

Erica: I think I should be telling you that.

Rune lunged from his corner, startling Erica.

Rune: YOU SHOULDN'T BE HERE!

He stood frozen in his position, with a look of madness on his dark mysterious face. Erica backed away a bit and looked confused.

Erica: Rune….what's gotten into you?

Rune: I did it---okay? I belong here. I fought that cop, the same way they fight me!

Erica: You were self-defending, there's nothing-

Rune: I was relentlessly striking at him, with anger and hatred in me—I became them and I DON'T WANT THAT.

Rune began to shed tears, and tried to suppress them. Erica was beginning to understand.

Erica: Oh, Rune….you can't blame yourself for what happened. You just lost it for a moment…that doesn't make you a bad person.

Rune: It makes me a street rat.

Rune said, with a stern tone of voice.

Rune: Now, just go.

Erica: But I-

Rune: I said GO why don't you listen to me?

Erica grew upset.

Erica: Fine! I came and risked my freedom to help you out, not to mention get THROWN OUT of my own house! I can't even go back there---why? Because I wanted to help out a FRIEND! EX friend, excuse me.

She turned around, with a weeping sound to her. She left the cell.

Erica walked down the hallway slowly.

Erica: (Oh god…why did I come? Why did I come….)

Before she could take another step she was grabbed from behind. She jumped and turned around, only to find Rune whimpering in front of her.

Rune: ……

Erica: …..? Rune?

Rune: I…..

Without warning Rune hugged her, tightly.

Rune: I'm…sorry.

Erica's eyes grew large with shock, and yet she was pleased. Neither of the two wanted to let go.

Erica: I….I apologize as well. I-

Rune: No….no it's okay….look; let's get out of here, yeah?

Erica smiled and nodded. The two headed down the hallway, only to run into two cops patrolling the area.

Officer 1: Huh? Takashi! You!

The cop pulled out his night stick in confusion, wondering how Rune had gotten out.

Officer 2: Both of you, freeze!

The second cop had pulled out his gun. Rune was about to take a step until Erica whispered to him.

Erica: Sometimes it's better to run….

Rune nodded, and the two darted in different directions. The officer with the gun began to fire at Erica, missing every single shot as she immediately began to escape his sight.

Officer 2: What in the hell? How is she moving that fast?

The other officer chased Rune down the long hallway with his night stick. When Rune had come to a dead end, he turned around and quickly lunged at the officer. The officer swung his night stick at Rune's ankles, trying to disable him. Rune jumped off the ground and gave the officer a good kick to the chest.

Officer 1: Ugh!

The officer dropped his night stick and grabbed his chest. Rune spun 360 degrees and kicked the officer one more time, this time in the chin. The officer quickly fell to the floor with no movement. The officer with the gun turned his attention to Rune.

Officer 2: Hey you, Takashi! Don't move---I've got this thing pointed straight for your head!

The officer held up his gun, with Rune in sight.

Rune: My stomach…

Rune grabbed his stomach and fell to the ground, near the fallen officer.

Officer 2: Huh? What's the matter with you boy?

Rune quickly smirked, giving away his distraction. He grabbed the night stick off the ground and flung it into the lights above. The lights went out, which is not good in a place as dark as the station.

The officer began to fire off in random directions, hoping to hit Rune. Rune stayed pressed against the floor, until he realized the officer was out of bullets. He got up on his knees and dashed for the nearest sound of an empty gun attempting to fire. He tackled the officer to the ground and rendered the officer unconscious with one good punch.

He continued his way down the hallway where it was much more lit, until he ran into Erica again.

Erica: There you are, I thought you were behind me.

Rune: Eh, close enough right?

Rune said with a light smile.

Erica: Well come on let's go!

Erica grabbed Rune's arm and began to run to the entrance of the station, post haste.

Rune: Whoa, whoa slow down Erica! I can't keep up!

Rune was practically falling out of her grasp, trying to stay in line with the speedy, spunky girl.

The two made it out of the station, and had forgotten the news reporters and police were outside. Someone had shouted and pointed to the two lone rangers, and the Kyoto Police Force was quick on their feet to nab the two.

Rune: Run! This way!

Erica: Run? That's a first coming from you.

Rune: This is no time for jokes!

Rune scolded Erica.

Rune began to run away from all the cameras and police. Before Erica joined him, she darted around the cameras and crew. The crew turned and tried to keep their eyes on Erica, only to cause them to trip and fall over each other. She immediately caught up with Rune, and they made their way into the rubble that is Kyoto once again.

Once they were safely away from everyone, they looked at each other.

Rune began to speak, out of breath.

Rune: Well, I really can't believe you broke me out of jail.

Rune said, taking a deep breath.

Erica: I can't believe I would do that for someone I just met.

Rune: You realize….there's no turning back now.

Erica: ….I know.

Rune: I….I'm sorry, for dragging you into this.

Erica: I got myself into this mess…..

Erica began to think to herself, not without Rune noticing.

Erica: Rune…..did they find out, about, about you?

Rune: Well….Branaghin knows that I'm---that I'm a GEO……It'll turn up in the media eventually.

Erica: You won't even be able to walk the streets if people know that…

Erica said, sadly.

Rune: ……I know Erica.

Erica: So….Mr. Lone Ranger…..what's left on your list……what does someone in your position do?

Rune thought to himself.

Rune: You know, I'm a man stuck with a problem. What does one usually do?

Erica: Fix it.

Erica said, almost knowing what Rune was thinking.

Rune: Right….My problem is that I can't live….because I'm a GEO. Being a GEO wouldn't normally be something to outcast a person for. Until…

Erica: Until the people got it in their heads that it's wrong to be a GEO.

Erica lowered her head, almost ashamed that she is one.

Rune: Right. It wasn't a problem, until people heard that it was a problem. How you do get a dirty river clean?

Erica looked at Rune with no answer.

Rune: You stop the crap that's coming in.

Erica: You stop…

They both whispered.

Rune Erica: NJP…….

Rune: That's what I have to do.

Erica: …..It's no easy task.

Rune: Will you help me?

Erica was almost stunned that Rune had simply asked for her help.

Erica: …..I think I have to do this with you.

Erica and Rune looked at each other.

Rune: You know, I never thanked you for breaking me out of that cell.

Erica: Think nothing of it.

Before Erica could say another word, Rune leaned in and gave her a light kiss on the lips, leaving her completely and utterly frozen in place, wide eyed and all.

Rune: Thanks for saving my ass.

Rune stood up on his feet and brushed the dirt off of his pants. He looked up into the starry sky, hoping for the best.

A/N: Well you know the drill. R/R and I'll try and churn out chapters at least once a week. Thanks and once again I apologize for the delay!

The One Still Called El Diablo